Responsibility for the administration of my Department’s Rural Water Programme, under which funding is provided to the rural water sector, has been devolved to local authorities since 1997.
My Department recoups funding under the Programme to local authorities which administer it on behalf of my Department. In relation to group water schemes, recoupment includes grants for capital works and annual subsidies as a contribution towards the annual operational and management cost of the domestic element of group water schemes.
The capital Multi-annual Rural Water Programme and the annual subsidy are dynamic funding processes with group water scheme numbers constantly changing. Numbers rise as new schemes develop and numbers drop as schemes are taken-in-charge by Irish Water or amalgamate into other schemes. The number of group water schemes for which annual subsidy claims were processed by my Department in 2010 was 738, whereas in 2017 the number had reduced to 654. Figures for 2018 are currently being compiled by my Department.
My Department does not compile figures in relation to schemes which may have been abandoned.